Despite pressure by a group of wealthy donors, Baylor will go through with terminating football coach Art Briles for his role in the sexual assault scandal that also forced the resignations of former university president Ken Starr and former athletic director Ian McCaw.
According to Chip Brown of Horns Digest, the push to suspend Briles for one season, and then bring him back in 2017 are dead. Attempts to convince the board of regents that Briles should be reinstated failed during a Monday teleconference. A Baylor spokeswoman said a vote never even took place.
Negotiations are now churning to settle Briles’ contract, which had eight years and nearly $40 million in guaranteed money remaining, sources told Brown. Briles signed a 10-year extension in 2013. One source told Brown the settlement could in the neighborhood of $20 million.
The Wall Street Journal reported Tuesday that the big-money donors who pushed to reinstate Briles included Jim Turner, the former chairman of Dr Pepper Bottling Co.; Drayton McLane, the former owner of the Houston Astros baseball team and whose name adorns Baylor’s 2-year-old football stadium; Bob Simpson, an oil-and-gas executive who is a co-owner of the Texas Rangers baseball team; and trial lawyer John Eddie Williams.
Briles was “suspended with intent to terminate” just prior to the release of a damning 13-page investigation by the Philadelphia law firm Pepper Hamilton into Baylor’s mishandling of rape and assault claims.
Baylor then hired former Wake Forest coach Jim Grobe took over the program as acting coach. Briles’ assistant coaches remain on the staff, including his son, offensive coordinator, Kendal Briles.